Eddie Dunbar shows real class again on climbs of Giro d’Italia

Posted on: May 26th, 2019
Eddie Dunbar was still there in the favourites group until the death after the most competitive racing so far on this Giro d’Italia.

Eddie Dunbar has put in another classy display on the climbs of Giro d’Italia during stage 15 when smaller hills resulted in attacking racing.

He placed in the top 20 on the stage and is looking now at finishing in the top 20 overall if he can maintain the form he has shown so far.

Irish champion Conor Dunne (Israel Cycling Academy) also lives to fight another day; finishing in 133rd and in a large group some 37:08 down.

Both Irish riders now have tomorrow’s rest day to look forward to before a final week of climbing.

On today’s stage 15, a two-man breakaway dominated the day, some 232km from Ivrea to Como, and just about survived for a two-man sprint on the line.

Dario Cataldo (Astana) was best from Mattia Cattaneo (Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec). And just 11 seconds later came a significant four-man group.

It contained race leader Richard Carapaz (Movistar), Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain Merida), Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) and Hugh Carthy (EF Education First).

A further 25 seconds back came another small group; five men led in by Miguel Angel Lopez (Astana).

Carthy and Yates attack off the front of the favourites group on the climb close to the finish
Nibali and Carapaz look intent on putting Roglic under pressure.

With the young Colombian were Rafal Majka (Bora-hansgrohe), Domenico Pozzovivo (Bahrain-Merida), Mikel Landa (Movistar) and Davide Formolo (Bora-hansgrohe).

And then another 15 seconds down – and 40 seconds off Carapaz and Nibali – came Primoz Roglic (Jumbo Visma).

He was with Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) and Ion Izagirre (Astana); all of those aforementioned riders accounting for the first 14 on the stage.

And Eddie Dunbar, putting in a really impressive ride considering the favourites had attacked each other hard during the final 15km, finished just seconds behind Roglic.

The Irishman’s Team Ineos team leader Pavel Sivakov completed the stage in 16th place; some 1:04 off the winner and 13 seconds down on Roglic.

And Dunbar finished two seconds later; in 19th place and 15 seconds down on Roglic.

With that, Dunbar is now closing in on a top 20 finish at this Giro, which would be a fantastic result in his first Grand Tour.

He is now 21st, some 26:45 down on race leader Carapaz, who now enjoys a 47 second lead on Roglic in second place.

Cataldo takes his first Giro stage victory a decade after his debut in the race
Sivakov of Team Ineos in the young rider classification jersey; retaining it today with the help of team mate Eddie Dunbar on the road to Como

Primoz Roglic endured a difficult stage today, being isolated on the main climbs of the Madonna del Ghisallo and Colma di Sormano.

After the descent of the Colma di Sormano the favourites group swelled a little and finally numbered 27 riders, with Dunbar still there.

Roglic suffered a mechanical and was forced to chase back on having switched to his team mate’s bike.

However, the real drama unfolded on the smallest and final climb of the day; the 4.1km Civiglio at 9.8 per cent.

Yates and Carthy first went clear of the favourites group on that climb and then Nibali and Carapaz, with Roglic distanced.

The Slovenia then crashed going down the climb; that fall costing him at least 20 seconds and maybe far more.

When Dunbar’s team leader Sivakov was dropped on the final climb, the Irish rider was able to help him and both limited their losses well on the 9km from the top of the climb to the finish.

Sivakov retains 9th place overall and the young rider classification jersey for Team Ineos.

Dunbar is also very solid; looking like he belongs within the top 20 best men on this race and not tiring despite the aggression he showed on the race’s first two mountain stages.